It’s always nice when we manage to save money on our utility bills, but it just so happens there’s a way to do it when you aren’t even home.

The secret is your thermostat. By using automatic schedules, you can tailor the temperature to your needs. That means you can have different temperature settings for when you’re at home, away or even when you’re sleeping.

With a few simple adjustments, you have more time to enjoy pleasant temperatures while keeping more money in your pocket. Here are some ways your thermostat doesn’t have to use up all your summer spending money:

While at Home

Pretty much whenever you’re home, you want to enjoy a comfortable temperature. It’s only natural to want your thermostat lower in the summer while inside to make the most of the cool air.

But in terms of energy efficiency, the best range for the summer is in fact anywhere between 78 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit. With this adjustment, you can stay cool while still lowering your monthly energy bill.

While Away

If you’re setting the temperature for whenever you’re gone, it’s extremely common to move the thermostat higher than you would if you were in the house.

If your home is in a shady spot in a cooler climate, you can set the thermostat to temperatures as high as 88 degrees while no one is home before lowering it back to the sweet spot of 78-80 degrees when you or a family member return. This way, your air conditioning unit won’t be working overtime to cool an empty house.

While Asleep

When it comes to sleeping in the summer, you want a temperature that’s nice and cool. You should try and keep things between 68-72 degrees Fahrenheit. There’s less risk of getting too hot or too cold while you’re trying to sleep.

Additional Ways to Reduce Energy Use:

  • Install a smart thermostat: Switching to a smart thermostat in the summer helps save money on energy costs as it forms temperature schedules according to your lifestyle and home environment. They can lower the temperature while you are home or sleeping, before allowing it to get a little warmer when the house is empty. With models like the Lennox iComfort, you have the ability to remotely access and change the temperature through your smartphone, tablet or laptop. Requesting smart thermostat installation in your Ames home is an effortless way to set the correct temperature whether you’re at home or across the country.
  • Replace current equipment with a newer HVAC system: Upgrading your HVAC system can save money in the long run. By investing in a more energy-efficient system, you can also count on lower utility bills since more efficient equipment requires less energy to reach your preferred temperatures. Air conditioning installation in Ames is a great way to beat the heat in the summer.
  • Keep up with AC maintenance: Hiring a skilled professional to perform regular air conditioning maintenance in Ames can have a big impact on your monthly energy use. With regular cleaning of the coils, checking for damage and clearing air vents of dust and debris, you may notice your HVAC system perform better during day-to-day use.. Increasing efficiency also limits strain on the unit and lowers operational costs, lowering total energy use and eventually the total monthly bill.
  • Replace your air filter regularly: A regular schedule for cleaning or replacing the HVAC system’s air filter saves money by keeping airflow as smooth and consistent as possible. When filters are clogged with dirt and debris, your air conditioner will have to work harder, and the strain can reduce the system’s life span and result in breakdowns.
  • Confirm your attic is sufficiently insulated: Insulation is one of the key components in any energy-efficient home, keeping the hot air outside and the cool air inside during the summer. The North American Insulation Manufacturers Association (NAIMA) recommends that homes in the southern United States should install at least 13-14 inches of insulation, while those in northern U.S. states should have 16-18 inches.
  • Inspect your ductwork: Leaky ductwork can raise your energy bills much more than 20 percent, plus it can also lead to problems with your water heater, clothes dryer and other appliances throughout your home. Watching for signs of leaks and sealing them can help with both these issues.
  • Seal all other leaky spots in your home: Sealing up other leaks in your home with caulk, foam sealant or weather-stripping helps keep things cooler during those hot summer days. Don’t forget to check for any gaps around windows, doors and even outdoor fixtures. Devoting time and effort to sealing leaks now can help you save a lot in the long run.